The Seton Breast Care Center began offering comprehensive care for breast cancer patients in February.
The $6.5 million center at 1201 W. 38th St. provides care in a comfortable setting using the latest medical technology, said Sandy Miller, Seton's network director for oncology and the clinical project leader for SBCC throughout its development.
"The center adds tremendous value to breast health services in the Central Texas region," Miller said. "It's very much been designed based on the best evidence now on how to take care of women through screening to survivorship."
Diagnosis can be done through the center's digital 3-D mammography machine, which provides a higher-quality image with greater detail than a traditional mammography. In addition patients may receive a breast sonography, bone density scan or lymphedema therapy. If a patient is diagnosed, nurses and past patients are made available to help navigate a patient through the process.
All patients can relax in spa-like lounges and waiting rooms. The center also has nutrition classes, yoga classes and one-on-one counseling. Stiletto Stampede's Boob Camp program is also held at SBCC, and the Breast Cancer Resource Center also has a presence, Miller said. More than 500 patients have visited the center so far, she said.
Miller said center officials want to next grow volunteer staffing by connecting with more agencies throughout Austin.
Breast exams can be intimidating for many women, Miller said. One frightened patient, for example, toured the facility and learned more from a nurse before being shown the equipment and informed about the procedure. She then agreed to the exam, Miller said.
"That's just one example of how this place is special because we really take our time helping patients get comfortable with the screening or diagnostic process," she said. "We take the time needed to answer patient questions and help guide them in the right direction."